Rules of Twitter

Twitter defined: Micro-blogging. You can say anything on Twitter as long as it’s 140 characters in length.

To get started, how do you tweet? Set up an account on Twitter. Find people with similar interests and begin following them. Listen in on the conversations to get a good feel for how Twitter works.

You can tweet from the Twitter web site, but I’ve found it to be much easier to install a desktop program, like Tweet Deck or HootSuite (the latter is my personal favorite). It’s always running on my desktop along with my instant messenger program, Adium.

With all forms of social media, it’s important to be seen as a contributor, not a leader. Be authentic and transparent with your audience.  

Here are some great Do’s and Don’ts of Twitter from a recent PRNewswire webinar I attended:

Twitter Do’s
- Do listen
- Do be transparent
- Do be a good citizen
- Do contribute value
- Do be authentic
- Do follow people in your industry
- Do join the conversation

Twitter Don’ts
- Don’t be a robot
- Don’t be a broadcaster (meaning: interact with Twitterville. Join in on the conversation)
- Don’t self promote ad nauseum
- Don’t forget a tweet is forever
- Don’t be negative about others
- Don’t forget the value of being human


Jenna Oltersdorf owns an award-winning public relations and design firm headquartered in Austin, Texas that specializes in media relations, internal relations, social media, and design.

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